Kids today spend more of their lives online than offline, according to research carried out by Kaspersky Lab and iconKids and Youth.
As kids grow older, offline activities tend to transfer to the online world. Moreover, three-in-four children prefer to use the Internet to get information, rather than any other source. These findings show that children can become even more vulnerable online without parental supervision and support.
Children stay close to their mobile devices all day, and even tend to sleep with them, so that they can go online around the clock from any location. The research shows that four-in-ten are reluctant to put their smartphone down even during mealtimes. Furthermore, 23% of parents of 8-10 year olds admitted that their kids take their mobile phones to bed with them. This number grows to 41% for parents of 11-13 year olds and reaches 64% for parents of 14-16 year olds.
The Internet has deeply penetrated into children’s lives. It connects them to their friends and relatives, they use it to find information, for entertainment and consider it as a destination point when looking for the latest news. Practically all activities that are of interest to children – from social contacts, to games and movies etc. – are accessible online. The difference in usage among kids who are 8-10 years old and those aged 14-16 years old can easily be tracked. The older they get, the more they “export” their offline activities to the online world.
With the rise of social networks, the way people communicate to each other has changed significantly. Results of the research illustrate this pattern: almost half of the teenagers questioned (49%) admitted that they would under no circumstances do without social networking, while only one fifth of kids aged 8-10 years old made the same claim. The research also has shown that, the older children get, the more they move their communication with people from the offline to the online world.
Another significant part of children’s lives – education – also moves online as they grow. As children grow older, they become more willing to use the Internet to learn. 26% of 8-10 year olds agreed that they study more online than offline, but for 14-16 year olds this number has grown to 39%.
Today’s information age sees teens turn online in search of the data they need: only 13% said that they search for the things that interest them offline, while 49% go online to get the answers to their questions. All in all, three-in-four kids (74%) prefer to use the Internet to get information, rather than any other source.